June 27, 2010

Finalizing the build

OK, we are almost there...

It's time to start cabling the components.

No special surprises here, just follow the instructions on the motherboard's manual.

A couple of tips though:
  • OS X supports the SATA controller included in the P55 chipset, so we'll use the Blue SATA connectors.
    Connect the HDD to SATA2_0, and the DVD to SATA2_1.
  • When connecting the Front Panel Audio, use the HD-Audio connector, not the AC'97 one.

Now for the fun part...

Cable management...

The Antec Sonata Designer 500 includes plastic "hooks" in the back side of the HDD cage.
These are great for cable management, allowing to wrap the spare length of the cables, or even unused PSU cables.

Not only it looks all neat and tidy, but by putting all the cables aside, the airflow in the case is improved, and so is its thermal performance.

Go ahead ! Plan which cables you are going to use, route the unused ones between the case main structure and the side panel, and tuck them neatly on the hooks.
Just don't forget you are going to need one PCI-E 6-pin connector for the Graphics Card.

When everything is set-up neatly, we can install the Graphics Card.

As a final touch to the case, take one of the neat Apple stickers included with your retail OS X Snow Leopard DVD, and stick it to the front panel...

Let the world know which OS you are running !


  1. Nice case! I used the same case for my X58 build. Antec used to have a white edge front bezel for that case. I bought 3 of them about a year ago. They really make the case look even better. Antec makes some very high quality stuff.

  2. @machuero: I wanted the white bezel too, but couldn't find it.
    It's indeed a very nice and sturdy case with lots of nice features...

  3. Hey Lnx2Mac.

    First of all, thank you for this blog! it is very useable!

    I am a music producer, and I would like to build a hack just like yours to work on. But I need one hdd just for audio.
    Therefore I would like to have three HDD. One OCZ Agility 120 GB SSD for OSX and two Samsung SpinPoint F3 Desktop Class HD103SJ 1 TB. One for user data, and one for audio files. How do i connect the HDDs? all to SATA2_0 or how to do it?

    - Kasper

  4. @Kasper: Thanks for your comment.
    Keep in mind that it's become quite hard to find the Motherboard and Graphics Card I selected... So you might have to source alternative ones.
    As for where to connect the HDDs, you could use SATA2_0, SATA2_2, SATA2_3... Actually, the order doesn't matter much, as long as you use the Blue SATA connectors.

    Good luck with your build !

  5. That looks neat! Where can i buy one? I'm planning to buy one for my X58 build. Maybe I can use a cable nook for the cable management. It looks like it needs some hard work to manage them.

  6. @vinncook: Glad you like it!
    It's indeed a beautiful case.
    I'd check on Amazon to see if you can still source one, or check out the Antec Solo II.

    The cable nook looks too bulky for my needs...
    I just use Hook-and-Loop wire wraps (Velcro One-Wrap®)...